The great fantasy writer R.A. Salvatore fielded questions in a popular “I am a” interview on Reddit, answering the question facing many popular novelists: “What is your position on fan fiction?” The novelist replied:
I am supposed to tell you that it’s evil and wretched and destroys anything and everything I’ve ever tried to accomplish. Truth is, this is supposed to be fun and entertaining, and when I hear about fan fiction using my characters, or when I see variations of my characters running around in an MMO, I think it’s the coolest thing ever. Truly flattering. Now, I can’t read the fan fiction, for obvious reasons, nor can I consider it “canon,” but I’m still flattered.
Salvatore is the author of The Crystal Shard, The Dark Elf Trilogy, The Hunter’s Blades Trilogy and many other sprawling fantasy novels. His work has spawned countless stories written by fans and an entire Lavender Eyes site dedicated to his fan fiction.
Fan fiction writer have made headlines lately. Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James began as Twilight fan fiction and Gabriel’s Inferno by author Sylvain Reynard began as Twilight fan fiction–both novelists inked seven-figure book deals this year.
When asked about James’ success, Twilight creator Stephenie Meyer replied: “Good on her — she’s doing well. That’s great!”